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Deborah Secor
11-17-2007, 12:45 PM
Okay gang, help me out here. Let's talk a little about paper and the difference between tooth and texture. I'm working on my new edition of the workbook, and I found myself in a conundrum. What is the difference to you? Let me share what I'm thinking to get the ball rolling. I really need some help thinking this through!!!!

PAPERS WITH TOOTH
Tooth is not the same as texture. Tooth is generally gritty and usually refers to the coating added as a surface treatment. Under a magnifying glass you’ll see little fissures and holes where the bits of pastel settle, but the best test is the hand. You need to feel the surface to see if it is fine-grained and machine smooth, rough and scumbled, or deep, soft and velvety. Sandpapers are usually made on a backing sheet of some kind, covered with a coating that contains pumice, sand, marble dust or other silicates that provide the irregularity needed to hold pastel in place, the 'tooth.'

For instance, sanded papers such as Wallis, Art Spectrum, UART or Sabretooth are generally fine-textured and rather smooth to the touch but have deep tooth. Richeson Premium Pastel paper, on the other hand, is slightly grittier, with a somewhat rougher hand.

PAPERS WITH TEXTURE
Texture is generally patterned into the paper itself. It usually refers to the weave or other regular marks left on the surface of the paper that will show up more clearly when pastel is stroked across it. The pulp of the paper may be apparent, resulting in a slightly striated, bumpy or screened surface. Some of these papers have a laid surface, which is a patterned texture of parallel lines impressed in each sheet.

Texture does not have as much depth as tooth and does not hold as much pastel in place, sometimes requiring a fixative or other finish to stabilize the pastel.

Textural papers include all of the watercolor papers such as Lanaquarelle, and printmaking papers such as Arches and Rives BFK. The most commonly used textured paper is Canson Mi Tientes, which is quite textured on the front side, bearing the dimples caused by the screen on which it's made.

I guess I'm still reeling from reading somewhere that an artist thought Brenda Mattson paper was quite toothy--when in my estimation it's very soft!

Is tooth and texture relative? Can I begin to explain all this effectively to people, or must I rely on photographs of paintings to show texture and tooth--or will that even work? Oy--help me out here. :eek: :eek:

Tell me what tooth is.
Give me examples of toothy paper.

Tell me what texture is.
Give me examples of textured paper.

Thanks for your opinions!!! :heart:

Deborah

Donna T
11-17-2007, 12:56 PM
Thanks for explaining the difference between tooth and texture, Deborah. I admit I never fully understood the difference between the two. I would have said that Wallis is very toothy and Canson has little to no tooth. You are right, Canson has a texture and that's what makes it different (although I will always think of it as toothless too because of its inablilty to hold many layers). I also sometimes think that texture can be applied to the effects we can get when putting pastels on a surface. A multi-layered sky where all the different layers can be seen in a 3-D way up close has texture vs. a sky that has been over blended and becomes flat, with no texture.

Donna

DFGray
11-17-2007, 01:01 PM
texture=appearence
tooth=ability to hold pastel

Deborah Secor
11-17-2007, 01:11 PM
Hmmm, thanks for the thoughts Donna. I guess for now I really want to analyze the paper itself, not the application of pastel. I thought of the textures we make, such as those that Tom Christopher does with his own boards. I need to think about that, too.

Dan, you can't stop there. I won't let you! It's not enough info!!! Tell me, why do you think texture is only appearance? If you don't want to use the word tooth for anything but the ability to hold the pastel (which might make sense), what about textural papers? Is texture thus also tooth? :confused: :confused:

Deborah

Dougwas
11-17-2007, 01:18 PM
Hi Deborah.

To me texture is the way the paper feels to the touch and tooth is what actually holds the pastel. The tooth of the paper can make the texture feel rough or smooth.

Maybe It can be explained by comparing the texture and weave to fabric. Depending on the weave, the texture could be smooth or rough. :confused: I think.

Good luck.


Doug

mrking
11-17-2007, 01:28 PM
for me, texture is the pattern on the paper that you see if you were to drag a pastel on its side over the paper, while tooth is the amount of bite that the paper has to grasp and hold the pastel.

Actually, Dan said it the best. It must be a guy thing. it just the way it is, there is no why. :)

Peiwend
11-17-2007, 02:11 PM
For me, a paper towel has texture, sandpaper has tooth, and photocopy paper has neither tooth nor texture. I think that most people could quickly understand this.

You write; "Textural papers include all of the watercolor papers..."
If you'll allow me a teensy, tiny correction: Hot Pressed watercolour paper has practically no texture. It is similar to the back of Colourfix. When primed with Colourfix Primer it is similar to Colourfix Paper but with a little less tooth.

All in all, I thought your explanation was excellent.

________________________Wendell

DAK723
11-17-2007, 03:47 PM
Deb,

I think your descriptions are very well written. I would agree with your differentiation between texture and tooth.

mrking wrote: for me, texture is the pattern on the paper that you see if you were to drag a pastel on its side over the paper, while tooth is the amount of bite that the paper has to grasp and hold the pastel.

Succinctly put and accurate. And explains why texture is not just appearance, but an actual indentation in the paper. Just not enough indentation to significantly increase the paper's ability to hold pastel.

Don

Deborah Secor
11-17-2007, 03:50 PM
Hi Deborah.

To me texture is the way the paper feels to the touch and tooth is what actually holds the pastel. The tooth of the paper can make the texture feel rough or smooth.

Maybe It can be explained by comparing the texture and weave to fabric. Depending on the weave, the texture could be smooth or rough. :confused: I think.

Good luck.


Doug

Okay, Doug, I guess that's a good description. Feel versus holding power.
Thanks!


for me, texture is the pattern on the paper that you see if you were to drag a pastel on its side over the paper, while tooth is the amount of bite that the paper has to grasp and hold the pastel.

Actually, Dan said it the best. It must be a guy thing. it just the way it is, there is no why. :)

Yep, that's my definition, too. What you see describes texture. It's describing tooth, bite, that seems harder, at least until someone has tried pasteling and understands that.

There is no WHY? Hmmm..there is. But maybe Dan doesn't need to describe it in any clearer terms than others have subsequently done. :wink2:

For me, a paper towel has texture, sandpaper has tooth, and photocopy paper has neither tooth nor texture. I think that most people could quickly understand this.

You write; "Textural papers include all of the watercolor papers..."
If you'll allow me a teensy, tiny correction: Hot Pressed watercolour paper has practically no texture. It is similar to the back of Colourfix. When primed with Colourfix Primer it is similar to Colourfix Paper but with a little less tooth.

All in all, I thought your explanation was excellent.

________________________Wendell
Ooo, that's a good analogy, Wendell. I may borrow that one! Thanks.

I agree about the watercolor paper. I haven't developed that paragraph yet so it will be further explained.

Thanks to all of you. I'm still mulling over how best to explain all this to the beginner! Still open to thoughts.....


Deborah

Deborah Secor
11-17-2007, 03:53 PM
Thanks, Don. Yes, I'm going to continue to try explaining texture as being sufficient to be seen but not enough to function to hold much pastel in place.

And then I'm going to describe the soft, nappy papers that have a fuzziness factor, such as the velours and suede matboard, etc., as well as going on to talk about the different effects you can achieve using differing papers and pastels! I have a lot to write yet.

Thanks!
Deborah

Tatijana
11-17-2007, 04:25 PM
Deborah -
One can also have a support that has both tooth and texture. If one gets into preparing ones own surfaces using the art spectrum mix or preparing a mix of gesso with pumice the mixture would be giving you the tooth and the type of brush and/or stroke or roller will or will not give you texture.

Deborah Secor
11-17-2007, 05:35 PM
Yes, I agree, and I intend to cover that issue as well.

Deborah

Tressa
11-17-2007, 05:55 PM
Good thoughts here. To me, as was said with the primers applied with brush versus roller, Texture is what I see and feel through the pastel pigment, and Tooth is what holds it there.
And the BM paper has no TOOTH!!! LOL I have two big blocks of it,and am just now trying it with some of the Pans, and some primers.
Tres
Tres

Snowbound
11-17-2007, 05:55 PM
I agree with Dan and mrking-- so I guess it is not a guy thing. I don't think you can relegate "tooth" only to sanded papers. Unsanded papers can also have tooth; it just isn't a hard, gritty tooth. I do agree that tooth can be defined to refer to the ability to hold pastel, but I am not sure that it can be neatly divided into two categories like that. I think rather than trying to assign attributes to a category of surfaces, these terms can be defined (as Dan and mr have done quite adequately, IMO) as attributes to be taken into consideration when choosing a surface to work on.

An added thought: I also do not believe that the ability to hold a lot of pastel is necessarily a positive attribute. A less toothy surface can force an artist to put more thought into what he/she is doing, and also allow incorporation of the texture of the paper into the composition.

Dayle Ann

DFGray
11-17-2007, 08:20 PM
why do you think texture is only appearance? If you don't want to use the word tooth for anything but the ability to hold the pastel (which might make sense), what about textural papers? Is texture thus also tooth?

the ability of the surface to hold pastel has no or little relation with it's laid appearence(texture), canson has the texture of canvas but not the tooth of sandpaper (little texture), in my opinion

Deborah Secor
11-17-2007, 08:39 PM
I agree with Dan and mrking-- so I guess it is not a guy thing. I don't think you can relegate "tooth" only to sanded papers. Unsanded papers can also have tooth; it just isn't a hard, gritty tooth. I do agree that tooth can be defined to refer to the ability to hold pastel, but I am not sure that it can be neatly divided into two categories like that. I think rather than trying to assign attributes to a category of surfaces, these terms can be defined (as Dan and mr have done quite adequately, IMO) as attributes to be taken into consideration when choosing a surface to work on.

An added thought: I also do not believe that the ability to hold a lot of pastel is necessarily a positive attribute. A less toothy surface can force an artist to put more thought into what he/she is doing, and also allow incorporation of the texture of the paper into the composition.

Dayle Ann

Dayle Ann, this is exactly why I'm bringing the discussion to my friends here, to see how I might better define this issue. Once I got into writing it the definitions didn't makes sense. I really intend to discuss this issue from the 'what end result do you hope to achieve?' standpoint. If you want hard-edged realism choose these kinds of papers and pastels; if you want a softly Impressionistic painting, try these; if you want a more painterly look use these... etc. I'm working on these ideas anyway!

More tooth is not necessarily better. More tooth may be 'easier' in some ways, only because toothy paper tends to allow you to erase or re-think things more often or longer. I know more than one successful artist who uses certain paper because it forces them to do things. Positive attributes tend to be strictly related to the effect one wants to achieve, in my opinion, but I just don't happen to subscribe to the idea of letting my paper push me around that much! :lol:

the ability of the surface to hold pastel has no or little relation with it's laid appearence(texture), canson has the texture of canvas but not the tooth of sandpaper (little texture), in my opinion
Thanks, Dan... :) I think you really have a point there! Maybe it comes down to 'paper is as paper does'.

Deborah

Deborah Secor
11-17-2007, 08:44 PM
Good thoughts here. To me, as was said with the primers applied with brush versus roller, Texture is what I see and feel through the pastel pigment, and Tooth is what holds it there.
And the BM paper has no TOOTH!!! LOL I have two big blocks of it,and am just now trying it with some of the Pans, and some primers.
Tres
Tres
Hey Tres, missed your post... I agree. Texture is seen, tooth is felt. Do you think that says it? Hmmmmmm.

I like the Mattson paper for the PanPastels, BTW. It's cushy enough to really like the blended qualities of the PPs. I never considered priming it. I like to use it for blended skies, in particular. It also works well for reflections.

Deborah

Tressa
11-18-2007, 08:59 AM
Yea ,I got two huge blocks when I went to Scotland, and when I tried to use it on location, was not real happy with the results, and switched back to the Wallis I had brought with me. It has been stacked in the bin since, and I have just taken it back out to explore with the Pans. And it takes a nice coat of primer very well. These blocks are a nice size, 15x24, and I really would like to make use of them as is a nice 100% cotton and cushy like you said.
That is a pretty good summation to me, texture is appealing to the eye, and tooth is a working tool of the surface.
Tres

Mary Brigid
11-19-2007, 05:53 AM
From my experience Deborah, when a paper is textured... be it dipples, hollows or a weave such as ingres... this texture will be imprinted on your work. But with toothed surface you can not see any texture through the pastels
Mary Brigid

Muffin_4377
11-19-2007, 01:21 PM
This is how I define paper (I believe along the same lines as Dan and others)...

Each type of paper (whether manufactured or a artist prepared surface) can be defined by BOTH it's texture AND tooth. Some can be high on texture and low on tooth, vice versa or somewhere in between....

ie: (This is how I mentally grade papers...)

AS's Colourfix : Low on Texture - is reatively smooth overall with a slight grittyness. High on Tooth - Sanded surface allows for many layers

Canson "right side" : High on Texture - dimpled surface; "honeycomb" texture. Medium Tooth - will allow for a few (3-5) layers

Strathmore (Textured): Medium texture - Woven look, surface looks much like canvas/fabric. Low Tooth - will only allow for 2-3 layers at most

I know there is many many more types out there, I used these as examples, cause that's what I have experience with. When I do try out new a support I always ask myself those 2 questions - What is the texture? What is the tooth? (I also go into Medium specific questions after that)

So Yeah...What Dan said :lol: (Gotta love how men can simplify)

Deborah Secor
12-06-2007, 10:54 PM
I just wanted to post a
BIG thank you
to all of you for participating in this discussion. I hope you don't mind if I quote some of the more pithy statements on texture and tooth in my workbook. They're just too good to pass up! Once I have it all written I'll share it here for you to critique...

:thumbsup:

Deborah

EdK
12-07-2007, 12:08 AM
Debra, Let's not forget about velour! Tooth or texture?

Colorix
12-09-2007, 08:25 AM
Gee, a tad complicated. Although I don't speak English as a first language, I'd like to add my thoughts.

I'm with those who consider texture to be what is felt with one's fingers, but also seen with eyes. Texture can be smooth, as paper for computer 's printer, even slick, as photo paper. Texture can be wowen (canvas), non-wowen (paper, velour paper), or close to wowen as Canson MT right side. Abrasively gritty like sandpaper, fine textured or really rough.

Tooth would be the capacity to hold or even grab pastel. Rough tooth and texture would often go together, but not always. Canson MT's right side is more textured, but seems to actually have less tooth than the 'wrong' side, because the actual surface contact is less on the right side, and much higher on the 'wrong' side.

Velour, for example, has a soft roughish texture, with a medium tooth. Wallis has a fine sanded texture with a good tooth.

And Schmincke's pastel primer has a very rough texture and more "jaws" than tooth. It gobbles pastels, but they adhere loosely in the 'dips'.

2 cents. :-)

reisa
12-16-2007, 02:51 AM
Hi:)
It seems to me, that texture is in the weave or the stamp of the paper, whereas, tooth is applied to the surface. I am not sure how velour fits in to that, but...

sundiver
12-17-2007, 03:57 PM
You can have texture and tooth together, or one without the other. Put acrylic gel roughly on some wc paper and you have texture but no tooth- bumpy but slick. Put pumice in the gel and you will have both. Put that pumice gel on with a roller, as evenly as you can, and you will have tooth but not much texture.